Blogging has been such a wonderful outlet for me. As a stay-at-home mom it is easy to feel lost in the never-ending wash-rinse-repeat cycle that is caring for tiny humans. It’s difficult to steal away for 5 minutes to use the bathroom alone, so we get a little cynical when people remind us to “take time for ourselves”. But we have to find ways to do little things that help us to recharge our batteries because if we’re never refueling our tank, we won’t have anything to pour into our family. Everyone is different: some people love to exercise and need help sneaking in their 30 minute workout video every day; others need a glass of wine and a soak in the tub in the quiet of the night after the kids have gone to sleep; still others need a creative outlet. Personally, I flip between needing some quiet and yearning to create something. However the tub in my master bath is forever dirty because I’m too busy cleaning areas of the house that other people are going to see. I hate exercising, and suspect that I always will. But I do love to write.
If there are any other moms out there who have thought about starting a blog but don’t really know where to start, I wanted to–
“Tweet! Tweet! Tweet-tweet-tweet? Tweet-tweet? Tweet-tweet-tweeeeeeet!!!!!” “Oh, hi little birdie! Your tweeting is so pretty, but it’s waking up my baby. Can you please go tweet in your play room?” “Tweet-tweet”
Sorry, I got interrupted by a little birdie. I was going to say, I wanted to take this oppoortunity while I’m nursing the baby to sleep to share how easy it can be to blog at home. It takes a bit of planning and a lot of thinking outside of the box and learning how to write in short spurts throughout your day instead of trying to find a whole uninterrupted hour–
“Mom, is it time for my dance class yet?” “No honey; remember I told you your class is in the evening. We just had breakfast. It’s going to be awhile yet.” “Ok. Can you play school with us?” “I can’t right now sweetie, because the baby is sleeping. But maybe after I lay her down, ok?” “Okkkkk…. But what if we promise to be really quiet?” “No honey, I want you guys to play in your play room please. You always end up waking her up.” “RED, GREEN, YELLOW, BLUE, LET’S FOLLOW THE JUNGLE CREW!!” “Eowyn–can you please turn that toy off before it wakes up the baby?” [INSERT 2 YEAR OLD AND 4 YEAR OLD FIGHTING OVER JUNGLE CREW TOY THAT NO ONE WAS INTERESTED IN 5 SECONDS AGO, BUT NOW IT IS THE MOST COVETED ITEM ON THE PLANET] “Stoppppp!!!! You are waking up the baby! Turn the toy off and go to your play room!”
Anyways, you can’t go into this expecting to write whole posts in one sitting because that’s just not realis–
“LET IT GOOOOO! LET IT GOOOOO! I AM ONE WITH THE WIND AND SKKKYYYY!” “Girls, please don’t wear the singing Elsa dress right now. Even though you’re a room away it’s still stupid loud and the baby is sleeping.” “But Moooommmm! I pretening tah be Elsa!” “Ary, you have your own Elsa dress though honey and that one doesn’t sing. Please take Eowyn’s singing dress off.” [INSERT THIS-IS-THE-END-OF-THE-WORLD CRYING]
Frozen has ruined my life. But, I digress.
Where was I? Oh right–finding the time to blog. I write most of my blogs while I’m nursing. When you are forced to sit for 30-120 minutes at a time 8-200 times a day, you might as well try to get something else accomplished, like preserving your sanity via the outlet of blogging. Try to remember to grab your laptop before sitting down and write while your little angel suckles away. Sure, your other kids will interrupt you, but you can always pick up where you left off. WordPress autosaves once it senses that you stopped typing–
[INSERT CHOKE-COUGHING COMING FROM PREVIOUSLY SLEEPING BABY] “WAAAAAAAAAAAAAA!!!!!!” “I didn’t wake her up, Mom! I was being really quiet. It must have been Arya.” “No! It wasna me, Mom, I promise!” “Calm down girls, it wasn’t either of you. Her nose is really snotty from her teeth and it’s dripping down her throat and making her cough. You guys are being really good. Can you go back to your play room, please, so I can nurse her to sleep again?” “O-tay. But I need da tape firs.” “Oh Ary, please no tape right now!” [INSERT QUICK AS LIGHTING FEET SCURRYING OVER TO THE JUNK DRAWER IN THE KITCHEN, GRABBING THE TAPE ANYWAYS, AND HURRYING BACK TO THE PLAY ROOM. FOLLOW THIS WITH THE UNMISTAKABLE SOUND OF ALL THE TAPE BEING PULLED OUT OF THE DISPENSER. i OPEN UP GOOGLE KEEP AND MAKE A NOTE TO BUY MORE TAPE.]
Uhh…right–anyways, you don’t really have to worry about losing something just because you didn’t hit ‘save’.
“Mom! Look–I made pony ears for my My Little Pony party!” “And I Minnie Mouse, and I mate you a bow! Here–put it on.” “Ba-ba-ba. A-goooo.” “Very nice girls. Well, since the baby is not going back to sleep how about we do the cupcakes for your dance class?”
THE NEXT DAY
Hi! I didn’t mean to leave you sitting around for a day but one thing led to another yesterday and before I knew it, a new day had begun. But the baby’s latched on again and I’m back. Um, what was I talking about? Right! Blogging at home and how easy it is.
If you only have a desktop computer and don’t want to invest in a laptop, you can blog on the go with the WordPress app on your smartphone. It syncs with your account online, so it’s really quite convenient. Although formatting can get a bit wonky and placing media from your phone is not ideal.
“Why she leaving?” “Is she thinking about going to be a pirate now?” “Guys, you’ve seen this movie a hundred times; you know the answers to your own questions.” “I wanna sit wit momma!” “No, I want to sit with mommy!” “Well girls, I’m nursing right now and I’m trying to do a little writting, so can Mommy have a little space, please?” “Uhhhhhh!!!!” “Oh, Ary–you just elbowed Laurelyn in the head. Please be careful! Eowyn, honey, you’re laying on my arm and I kind of need it so I can write–“
3 HOURS LATER
Oops, sorry I didn’t mean to make that last paragraph a block quote. I was writing on my phone because I forgot to grab–
“I NEED TAH GO PODDY!!!!” “Ok, go, go, go! I’ll meet you there!” [I HEAR THE PITTER PATTER OF 2 YEAR OLD FEET DOWN THE HALLWAY AND TO THE BATHROOM AS I GET OFF THE COUCH WHILE CONTINUING TO NURSE THE BABY.] “Uh-oh…I peed my panties.”
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“WAAAAAA!!!!” “Eowyn, why do I hear typing? Are you using my computer?” “WAAAAAAA!!!!!” “…Yes…I’m just trying to write like you.” “WAAAAAAAAA!!!!!” “Ok, but–ARY, STOP STEPPING IN THE PEE!–Eowyn, you’re not supposed to touch my computer without asking. I left my post open, so please don’t touch it. I have to finish cleaning up the pee on the floor.” “WAAAAA!!!” “But I want to write too!” “WAAAAA!!!!!!” “But Eowyn, you don’t know how to write yet; you’re only 4.” [INSERT END OF THE WORLD CRYING HERE] “I JUST WANT TO BE BIGGGGG!!!!!!” “EOWYN–JUST STOP! ARYA–STOPPPP WITH THE PEE! EVERYONE, JUST–STOP!” “WAAAAAAAAAAAAA!!!!!!!”
A WEEK LATER
Man last week was a doozy; all three kids ended up with colds and fevers. But everyone’s healthy again, the baby’s nursing, so I can finish this post finally.
“Mom, I hundry!” “But you just ate!” “Noooo!!! I hundry again!” “Ok, well you have to wait. I can get you something after I get the baby to sleep.” [INSERT END-OF-THE-WORLD CRYING HERE.] “I get nola bar.” “Fine; but you have to eat the granola bar at the table. And no more fits, or the baby will never fall asleep.” “I’m hungry too! I want cereal!” “Ok, that’s fine; you can get it yourself. Just please try to not make a mess with the milk.”
I don’t even remember where I was going with this. Blogging, WordPress being so user friendly, the smartphone app…
Right, so next is just to be creative in finding pockets of peace in which to write in. This is a difficult task when you have little tyrants running your life, but it’s not impossible.
“MOOOOOMMMMMMMMM!!!!! Arya stole the milk and spilled it EVERYWHERE!!!!!!!!” “WAAAAHHHHH!!!!”
THE NEXT MORNING
Ok, I woke up early today so that I can finish this post before the kids wake up. Well, the baby woke up when I tried to sneak out of bed because we co-sleep. But she’s back to sleep now, albeit on my boob, but beggars can’t be choosers. If your kids are on a somewhat consistent sleep schedule, and you can discipline yourself to wake up before them or stay up late, then you can get the bulk of your writing done then. Personally, I’m not a fan of the waking up early bit because I am not a morning person. The time after the girls go to sleep is the only time that I get to spend with my husband though, so sometimes I have to just suck up and wake up a couple hours early in order to get some writing done. Ce le vie.
In order to build an audience, it’s advised to publish a post once a day. It sounds like a lot, and if that thought overwhelms you, then start smaller. Consistency is key; you want to publish posts regularly so that readers don’t forget about you. You decide what “regular” is going to look like for you: once a day, 2 times a week, once a week, 2 times a month. But do your best to stick to the schedule that you set for yourself.
As long as you write about things that you genuinely care about, people with similar interests will want to read your material because your passion will shine through your words.
You’ll learn to write one handed, on your phone, and in as little as 2 minute increments. But once you find the routine that works best for you, it will all come togeth–
“Mommmm!!! I had an accident in my bed!” [THE BABY STARTLES AWAKE FROM HER SISTER YELLING DOWN THE STAIRS AND BITES MY NIPPLE.] “AHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!” “Mom, are you ok?!” “Yes, yes–the baby just bit me. I’ll be right up. Don’t sit down so you don’t get pee anywhere else!” “…I’m already sitting in the hallway…”
On second thought, I think I’ll become a writer after the kids are in school.